Thursday, July 29, 2010
10 Years Together
Today I am celebrating ten years of marriage with the man who God hand-picked for me to share my life with. On a Saturday in August 1999, I met him the first day on my college campus after praying that God would bring me a Christian friend. I was thinking of a girl, but little did I know He had other plans.
Mark and I hit it off from the beginning, learning that we had a lot in common such as our faith, working at summer camps, an interest in missions work, and music. I was a music major, and we played in the marching band and concert band together. I was also looking for a church, so he invited me to his and began picking me up every Sunday. We became involved in the same campus ministries, and soon we were spending nearly every waking moment together. What started out as an awesome friendship turned into romance, and we made our relationship official in November of '99.
We were engaged in March of '00, and married July 29, 2000. I was 19 and he was 21. We were young, but felt strongly that God had led us together, and His blessing was on our marriage. The story of our life together was just beginning.
Over the next four years, Mark finished his degree in Information Systems and joined the workforce, and I finished my double major in Music Education and Flute Performance. In November '03 we were surprised and delighted to find out we were expecting a little firecracker, due in July. Just two weeks later we found out we had miscarried, but already loved that baby so much, and in our hearts had become a mommy and daddy. At the end of January '04, we found out God had provided us another Little Miracle, due in September. That was the beginning of the chapter in our story called Parenting.
We had our first son Caedmon Sept. 22, 2004. Then in January 2007 we were blessed with another wonderful son, Jayden. In Dec. 2008 we found out we were pregnant again and learned in March '09 that our baby was a little girl. We had no idea that we would only have her for 26 weeks in the womb, before she went to heaven. Then began the chapter of Grief.
In October 2009 we learned we were pregnant again with our son Benjamin, and learned during the pregnancy that we are both carriers of the Cystic Fibrosis gene. Ben was born June 21st, and officially diagnosed with CF July 6th at 2 weeks old. Now we begin a new chapter with him.
Our story these first ten years hasn't turned out exactly as we had imagined. It has been filled with a lot more heartache than we would've guessed, but still so much joy and so many amazing blessings along the way. We've learned to be there for each other, help each other, and be patient with each other, and most importantly we've learned that when it's more than we can bear on our own, God is always and forever enough! We have learned so well the meaning of these verses read at every wedding.
Two are better than one, because they have a good return for their work: If one falls down, his friend can help him up. But pity the man who falls and has no one to help him up! Also, if two lie down together, they will keep warm. But how can one keep warm alone? Though one may be overpowered, two can defend themselves. A cord of three strands is not quickly broken.
Two are certainly better than one, I could never do it without my husband by my side, leading and loving our family, providing strength when I have none. And the third strand of the cord is by far the most steadfast, as we look to God when we come to the end of ourselves.
In these ten years, we have learned so many things. A few are:
*laughter can fix anything,
*always smile and give each other a hug during the first five minutes together at the end of the day, it makes all the difference,
*romance can come in all kinds of ways, even if it's just having the energy left after all the kids are in bed to talk over a bowl of chocolate ice cream
*The deepest form of love looks different than you would think, and often takes the shape of two broken people holding each other through their tears
Mark, thank you so much for ten years of traveling this road side by side, I look forward to living the rest of our story together!